what are we looking at?
when i teach athletes how to lift, i always start with what the athlete is looking at - which is straight ahead. head and eyes looking straight ahead.
where the head goes, the body will follow.
if we don't start off with this good foundation, it could throw off the rest of the lift. (ask me how i know. answer: cause in the past i've tried to skip teaching this and it screwed me. lol)
it's best to stare at a point that is about parallel to where the eyes are, so in this case, Trevor would be looking at a point about a foot higher than me because, well, i'm a shorty =p... and it's important to stare at this point for entirety of the lift: just before the lift starts, throughout the lift, standing up with the lift, and then after the bar drops look away.
coaching tip: i could just tell him to look head and eyes straight ahead, so why am i standing in front of him and invading his personal space?
first of all, we've developed a trust and a rapport so i feel like...
Critical as this is the place where you will be supporting all the weight that you want to be snatching.
For example, if you want to be snatching 250lbs, you need to and you better be able to support 250obs overhead.
As always, head and eyes straight ahead, big chest tight back, core right, elbows externally rotated (rotated to the ceiling) and you want to stack the bones - you want the barbell (from a vertical perspective) over the wrist, over the elbow, over the shoulder, over the hips, over the knees, over the ankles.
As you can see, bringing the barbell back just an inch - when I provide a little bit of tension, right away the athlete knows this is not strong.
When the bar is brought an inch forward of proper position - the same holds true.
But when the bar is behind the head, and is in a "stacked" position - I provide a lot of force and the athlete supports it with seemingly no effort.
So - get your overhead position correct and lift big weights! =D
where should the weight be when you start the lift?
especially when doing barbell cycling, a lot of lifters will start the lift with the weight on their heels because it's a passive position - they can rest here and not have to bear the weight of the load they are carrying.
unfortunately, it isn't a strong position to move from, and therefore is not a strong position to lift from.
so where do you want the weight? you want the weight midfoot/ball of your foot. the same place it would be if you were to jump. feel solid there, look straight ahead, tighten your core, and from here... lift
Here's a video explaining in a little more depth and more clearly what I mean about positioning over head. Here I am with Cary and you can see that from the side, we want to position the barbell so that it is lined up with pretty much the back of her head, over her shoulders, over her hips, knees, and ankles. When I bring the barbell a little further back and a little further forward of this ideal position and provide some resistance, you can see that that position is not very strong and does not provide much stability. (note that if you are going to do this with an athlete or a friend, you only need to provide a little bit of gentle resistance for them to feel that this is not the optimal position (aka don't yank on the barbell! lol)).
Reminder from yesterday, that in this optimal overhead position, to cock the wrists back slightly so that the weight of the bar is resting more on your palm and wrist versus the metacarpal of your thumb (your thumb bones)....
the starting position is huge, but a lot of lifters don't give it much thought.
as olympic lifting is such a technical and positional movement / lift, it is so important to get your positions right.
here's another one for you. each position is set up for success, or failure, by the position before it. as such the starting position sets up the success (or failure) of the rest of the lift.
therefore... it is SOOOO IMPORTANT to get this right. and on top of that, this is one of my favorite things to do for the starting position it's such a great hack because it helps the lifter maintain position and pull the knees back without having to pull the knees back as far and thereby unloading the legs.
give it a shot, let me know what you think!